Swallowing Awareness Day
In 2021, Speech Pathology Australia will host Swallowing Awareness Day on Wednesday 17 March.
Like breathing, swallowing is essential to everyday life. Humans swallow at between 500-700 times a day, around three times an hour during sleep, once per minute while awake and even more during meals.
Around one million Australians have a swallowing difficulty. Swallowing problems can occur at any stage of life. However, the knowledge of dysphagia and its implications remain largely unknown for most Australians.
Swallowing Awareness Day 2021 is an opportunity to bring attention to swallowing disorders and to connect people with speech pathologists, the professionals who can help.
The theme for Swallowing Awareness Day in 2021 is: Dysphagia. A difficult diagnosis to swallow!
A secondary theme is: What’s this thing called Dysphagia?
What is Dysphagia?
Swallowing difficulty (dysphagia) is any problem with sucking, swallowing, drinking, chewing, eating, controlling saliva, taking medication, or protecting the lungs from food and drink ‘going the wrong way’. It can be a problem with keeping the lips closed so that food, liquid or saliva doesn’t dribble out.
Sometimes, the first sign of a swallowing problem is coughing, gagging or choking when eating and drinking. Swallowing problems can mean food, drinks or saliva gets into the lungs and this can cause lung infections (pneumonia). Reflux is a problem where the valves in the oesophagus causes the contents of the stomach (like food, drink or stomach acid) to come back up, sometimes reaching as far up as the throat and mouth.
Learn more about swallowing difficulty (called dysphagia) by reading the Fact Sheet on Swallowing.
Social media competition 2021
As in 2020, the Association is running a social media competition on Twitter and Instagram to help promote Swallowing Awareness Day in 2021,. The winning entry will win a $150 eftpos voucher.
Entering the Swallowing Awareness Day social media competition is as easy as A, B, C.
- In the lead-up to Swallowing Awareness Day, post a photograph of you (include colleagues, friends, family or clients), enjoying (or not enjoying) a cup of coffee or tea (think outside the box!). Make sure you have everyone's permission;
- As part of your post write something about swallowing or dysphagia and help highlight the importance of swallowing and how it is too often taken for granted; and
- Include the Association’s handle @SpeechPathAus and the hashtags: #SwallowAware2021 and/or #dysphagia
Then, encourage colleagues, friends or family to “like” (and retweet) your post.
Help spread the word about Swallowing Awareness Day. Join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram so share your experiences and thoughts.
Use the hashtags: #dysphagia and/or #SwallowAware2021 (NB. Do not use the hashtags: #swallowing #swallow or #SAD).
New digital campaign kit
For Swallowing Awareness Day 2021 the Association has created a digital campaign kit with social media graphics that can be download and used straight-away. There are a range of social media tiles and a number of zoom-backdrops, which can also be used for social media. The kit also includes the Swallowing Awareness Day logo and email signature.
Download the Swallowing Awareness Day digital campaign kit
Promote Swallowing Awareness Day by including the Swallowing Awareness Day email signature on every email you send. Download the Swallowing Awareness Day email signature.
NB. Once the signature is downloaded it may need to be resized for specific usage. Link the email signature to this page.
There are two infographics available to highlight Swallowing Awareness Day. The following files can be downloaded:
In the Campaign Kit you will find material to help promote Swallowing Awareness Day. Download the Swallowing Awareness Day Campaign Kit .
The kit also includes a line drawing to involve children in a a colouring competition (or the like).
NB. The kit contains all the promotional collateral for Swallowing Awareness Day. The material in the kit is designed for printing on an office printer (or photocopier). Artwork for the same material for use with a commercial printer is also available. Download artwork for use with a commercial printer (e.g. contains crop marks) .
Download the Swallowing Awareness Day logo.
Primary logo (Pelican)
Secondary logo (Dysphagia)
Media release - member only
A template media release is available for Association members-only to use to promote Swallowing Awareness Day. (NB. Must be logged in to download this file.)
View the media release template .